How to build a sales rep strategy that fills your B2B pipeline


Dozens of them For the enterprise tech companies I’ve had the pleasure of working with, pipeline (the number and quality of sales-qualified opportunities) is a key driver of go-to-market success.

While pipeline is often viewed as a marketing domain, sales development representatives (SDRs) can be responsible for over 60% of pipeline in B2B SaaS.

SDRs are ‘funnel master’ salespeople, making cold calls, writing or sending email messages. They are also important in early stage or ‘sales allergic’ industries such as DevOps or ITOps. In short, SDRs are a critical part of a company’s pipeline, and therefore, overall success. Despite this, sales pitches focused on topics like call volume or the technology stack have little information on how to build an effective organization beyond the sales ledger. These topics don’t address the more difficult questions like where to find SDRs or how to get the most out of them. Here are four common roadblocks founders and executives face when building their SDR teams, and the solutions to achieve success.

While pipeline is often viewed as a marketing domain, sales development representatives (SDRs) can be responsible for over 60% of pipeline in B2B SaaS.

It is better to build at home

One of the most common questions from early stage founders is whether to outsource sales or build an in-house SDR team. Outsourcing SDR recruitment is attractive because building an in-house team involves a lot of time, resources and effort. Vendors promise ‘ready-to-dial’ SDRs and expensive software stacks, which are not available for long.

However, it is almost always better to build an SDR organization in-house, especially at an early-stage company. First, external suppliers are not successful in communicating the differences and key benefits of your solution, especially for highly technical products. Additionally, much of early marketing and lead generation is about learning and testing, such as “What messages resonate with our target customers?” It is to answer such questions. or “Are we even targeting the right customers?” If you’re working outside, you might get leads, but you certainly won’t get that education.

In many cases, outbound marketers spam large lead lists to prevent low conversion rates. This can damage your brand. You only get one chance to make a first impression and burning leads can have a serious downward impact. You may also be interacting with customers outside of the customer profile that fits you, putting pressure on your product, customer service, and strategy teams.

To manage the common risks of building in-house, use an external vendor like MemoryBlue for SDR training or an inexpensive technology stack like SalesLoft to build. Finally, make sure you hire a sales leader who is willing to manage both the SDR and account executive (AE) team.

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